Financial institutions have been commended for the key role they play towards the growth of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) businesses.
This was during the launch of the second edition of the Buy Uganda Build Uganda (BUBU) initiative.
Launched in 2014, the BUBU policy is centered on promoting the procurement and consumption of locally produced and manufactured goods and services while encouraging local investors to produce, improve capacity of to supply government, enhance the quality and competitiveness on the local and International market, create jobs, among other elements that are intended to drive the country towards achieving middle Income status.
While speaking at the virtual forum, Hon. Amelia Kyambadde, Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives said that, “in the bid to promote and support local Investors and producers, the president had last year launched the first edition of the BUBU expo that was held in Kololo,” adding that, “the BUBU logo was secured and gazetted and Ugandans can now use it on their products, in support of the BUBU initiative,” Kyambadde remarked.
The theme of this year’s first phase of the E- conference is Banking Sector involvement the BUBU Initiative.
Hon. Kyambadde noted that “the banking sector is very important in boosting the initiative and Centenary Bank has evidently complied with the BUBU Policy while it serves Ugandans.”
She further stated that the initiative is paying off and government is seeing the results.
She revealed that they have increased the purchase of locally manufactured pharmaceutical products from Shs 156 billion to Shs 165 billion between 2017 to 2018, established more industries that manufacture masks and sanitisers.
Commenting on the role played by financial intuitions in support of the BUBU initiatives, Centenary Bank managing director, Fabian Kasi revealed that the bank is a home grown business and is a great supporter of BUBU.
“As a financial institution, we have endeavoured to financially include as many people as possible in the banking space with keen focus on the four tenets of Banking and Financial Inclusion; the range of banking services offered both traditional and digital, designing products that are easy to use and access, affordability of banking services at a reasonable cost and offering the banking and financial services in a sustainable manner,” he said.
Steven Kayiwa, the Director of Global Paints Uganda said since inception of the Global Paints Company approximately 10 years ago, they have received support from Centenary Bank, a role that has been instrumental to the growth of the Global Paints brand.
Centenary Bank General Manager Commercial Banking Michael Jjingo noted that being the largest commercial microfinance bank in Uganda, it gives them the platform to reach out over 70% of Ugandan-owned MSMEs in the country and has accorded them requisite support including financial literacy training.
Agaba Julius Alfred, the Director Investment Review Publications, the organisers of the expo, advised that the BUBU e-conference and exhibition is set to run for 6 months, and is targeted to reach over 20 million BUBU stakeholders, government, as well as consumers through television, radio, internet platforms, magazines and newspapers.